After reading yesterday's post
about the role that Henry Mayhew's London Labour and the London Poor
played in the birth of steampunk, William Gibson wrote in to add,
I've never actually read Mayhew, but feel I've long had him, through
brilliant osmosis, with Kellow Chesney's Victorian Underworld, which is easily one of my favorite books
ever. People assume, when I tell them that, that Chesney would mainly
have influenced The Difference Engine, but actually this was very
consciously the basis of the criminal society of Neuromancer, et al. It
was a Victorian model, as I saw what's since come to be called
neoconservatism producing a neo-Victorian world. Not a bad call, either!
I literally had The Victorian Underworld on my desk constantly,
throughout the writing of Neuromancer, and for years after.
(Image: The Victorian Underworld from rauter25's photostream)
It’s free for anyone to take, and Finns can get credit at the Open University of University of Helsinki (yes, that’s what it’s called).
Though Everfair is Nisi Shawl’s debut novel, it’s also been a hotly anticipated book for years, as Shawl is the co-author of Writing the Other, a seminal book about diversity in prose; and is a much-respected critic and teacher. The book was worth the wait.
I’ve been noting humorous updatings of Ambrose Bierce’s 1906 humor classic The Devil’s Dictionary for years — there was the publishing edition, and this corker on copyright — but the Educational Technology edition, by New Storytelling author Bryan Alexander has a currency and an urgency that scores an acerbic bullseye.
I’ve never really felt the need to purchase a smartwatch because a lot of them aren’t very functional, but at just shy of $30, the Martian Notifier Smartwatch was worth checking out. For that low of a price, it actually does feature an impressive amount of functionality, and comes in handy when you don’t want to be carrying around your […]
Geek Fuel is a subscription delivery service that caters to those of us that love comics, gaming, and general geek culture. Every month, Geek Fuel will assemble a box of goodies with a value of $50 or over. The specific items are a mystery, but you’ll always get an exclusive t-shirt not found anywhere else, a full […]
If you like to DIY and you like helicopters, you’re going to really love the Flexbot Hexacopter Kit. This copter blows traditional models out of the water: it includes everything you need to actually build your own hexacopter, and then pilot it like a pro, too.The construction is complicated enough to give you a challenge, […]